Playback: Austin Scared Stupid

Once again, everything hits at once

Ancient VVisdom with (a painting of) Coffin Joe
Ancient VVisdom with (a painting of) Coffin Joe (Photo by John Anderson)

Here, the madness never stops. If music fans thought they were getting a breather between the two weekends of ACL Fest and the looming Fun Fun Fun Fest, they're dead wrong. The next seven days are packed. As it happens so often in Austin, everything hits at once.

This weekend we welcome the inaugural Housecore Horror Film & Heavy Metal Festival, a two-headed monster of movies and metal, devised by Texas metal legend Phil Anselmo and true-crime author Corey Mitchell.

"I was thinking small," the Pantera frontman told Richard Whittaker for our comprehensive preview. "But once word got out, it was like, wow, there's so many people that wanted to be part of this thing and team up and do a lot of special things for this particular event. It was kind of mind-blowing."

Kicking off tonight, Thursday, at the Dirty Dog Bar and continuing all weekend at Emo's and Antone's, Housecore boasts Italian prog veterans Goblin scoring Dario Argento's art-splatter classic Susperia on the reunited band's first trip to America. Look also for heavy mainstays Gwar, the Melvins, Pig Destroyer, and up-and-comers including Pallbearer and Bloody Hammers. Of course Anselmo's home state, Louisiana, gets repped too with Down and sludge heroes Eyehategod.

Next Thursday, every band's favorite holiday hits with a horde of Halloween events including band tributes, zombie balls, and, as required by state law, a Roky Erickson performance (see "Music Listings").

If that wasn't enough, the next four days pile on the country's biggest music roundup, the Austin Record Convention, a conference celebrating our sisters in rock (Meow Con, see below), and the Texas Book Festival (flip to the Music reviews page), with its rock-solid live music lineup.

And you thought you had time to kill.

Ancient VVisdom's Drive-In

When they're not summoning Satan, Housecore Horror performers Ancient VVisdom enjoy a good horror flick.

10) Alucarda (Mexico, 1978)

9) Nosferatu (Germany, 1922)

8) White Zombie (U.S., 1932)

7) The Shining (U.S., 1980)

6) The Last Man on Earth (Italy, 1964)

5) Torture Chamber of Dr. Sadism (Germany, 1967)

4) The Wicker Man (UK, 1973)

3) The Devil's Rejects (U.S., 2005)

2) The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (Texas, 1974)

1) At Midnight I'll Take Your Soul (Brazil, 1964) / This Night I'll Possess Your Corpse (Brazil, 1967)


Musicians for Equal Opportunities for Women (MEOW) takes over the Arboretum's Renaissance Hotel this weekend, beginning with tonight's banquet, which finds our senior music writer Margaret Moser receiving "Woman of Valor" honors. "I've seen women's music organizations come and go," relates Moser, "but none with the chutzpah, vision, dedication, and longevity of Carla Black and MEOW, whose tireless efforts at educating and inspiring women about the music business are remarkable. Every time I go to one of the events, I turn into a teenager, giddy to see my heroes." One of those heroes, pioneering femme rocker Suzi Quatro, takes the stage to reprise her Seventies super hit "Stumblin' In" with Fastball's Tony Scalzo assisting. And that's just the firestarter, with a keynote address from former Go-Go's local Kathy Valentine and more than 100 female performers.

Gourds Split

Beloved roots-groove weirdos the Gourds have announced an "indefinite hiatus" following Sunday's performance at Threadgill's World Headquarters. Perhaps syrup-voiced frontman Kevin Russell's comments in recent Gourds doc All the Labor summed it up the best: "The Gourds are not easy to sell, they're not easy to understand, it's just not easy." The band formed in 1994 and released 10 studio albums, most recently Old Mad Joy (revisit "Dog Years," Sept. 23, 2011). They were heard worldwide on a Napster-era cover of Snoop Dogg's "Gin and Juice." After this weekend's gig, fans will have to settle for the group's various side projects, including Russell's popularizing Shinyribs, which played the first weekend of ACL Fest.

Stubb's Expanding

Come to think of it, the back end of Stubb's looked like a rundown section of inner-city Detroit. Now, the three boarded-up buildings on the northwest corner of the Red River venue are undergoing renovations and will soon be used for private events and VIP access during Stubb's outdoor shows. "They'd been dilapidated storefronts for a long, long time, way before we got the lease," confirmed General Manager Ryan Garrett. "They were in such bad shape that we couldn't ever use them for anything more than storage." The remodel, priced at $160,000, includes removing the walls separating the three spaces and replacing them with steel I-beams to create one 5,400-square-foot room. Three banks of new bathrooms and lighting were added as well. Garrett's optimistic that the space will host live music in the future.

Half Notes

• The Austin Record Convention returns this weekend and organizer Doug Hanners reports that, due to increased interest in vinyl, he's seen a flood of new dealers from Texas and abroad, making this his biggest show in years. The convention runs all weekend at the North Austin Event Center (10601 N. Lamar), with Friday available only to those who buy "early shopper tickets."

• Recent Chronicle cover boys White Denim played Letterman last Friday. Frontman James Patralli, typically dressed like a college professor, looked particularly cheerful as they beat out a tight rendition of current single "Pretty Green," after which the host told the band, "Tell the people at the Salt Lick I'd like some brisket."

• Housecore performers the Melvins have been in Round Rock recording with Honky bassist J.D. Pinkus, who'll join them Saturday at Emo's. Conversely, Melvins drummer Dale Crover fills in for Honky, as well as Eyehategod. Just to make it more confusing, Honky guitarist Bobby Rock has joined Down.

Ron Jeremy was sighted at the Lost Well Saturday night while freak funk trio Don Von Bronson played. The porn legend, wearing a yellow shirt and Crocs, stayed for just a moment and left to eat at Gourmands.

SXSWfm has given the Chronicle an online radio show, the only local program where you'll hear the Texas Tornados and League of Extraordinary G'z played in sequence. The "Chronolog," hosted by yours truly and staff writer Chase Hoffberger, now airs every Thursday at 6am, noon, 6pm, and midnight. Our mission: to hit listeners with the veteran faves and emerging acts like American Sharks, Kydd Jones, Crooked Bangs, Max Frost, and Mammoth Grinder. Tune in at

Free Music at the Texas Book Festival

The Music Tent is located on 11th Street between Colorado and Congress.


10am: Rattletree Trio

11: James McBride & the Good Lord Bird Band

Noon: Austin Lyric Opera

1pm: the Painted Redstarts

2: Michael Fracasso

3: Rosie Flores & the Rivetors

4: Austin Lounge Lizards


Noon: Who Do

1pm: McCain Duo

2: Sarah Fox & Joel Guzman

3: Kinky Friedman

4: Peterson Brothers

Ten Halloween Happenings

• ACL Live at the Moody Theater: 5th Annual Zombie Ball, with Black Joe Lewis and Jesse Dayton's Captain Clegg & the Night Creatures

• Belmont: Halloween Dance Party, with Neon Indian (DJ set), Learning Secrets

• Continental Club: Roky Erickson, Hounds of Baskerville

• Frank: Cinema Mysterioso Costume Party, with Spindrift, Christian Bland & the Revelators, Hollow Trees

• Grindhouse (old Emo's): Twerk or Treat, with Ying Yang Twins

• Hotel Vegas: Bad Lovers, Memories, Peach Kelli Pop, Grape St., etc.

• Infest: Flametrick Subs, Midwest Monster, Convoi

• North Door: Return to Hell ... A Halloween Ball, with Christeene, JJ Booya

• Red 7: Children in Heat, with Dolls from the Crypt (as Misfits), Black (as Black Flag), Flame Thrower Love (as the Dead Boys), Salad Days (as Minor Threat)

• Spider House: White Ghost Shivers, Clyde & Clem's Whiskey Business

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Housecore Horror Film & Heavy Metal Festival, Meow Con, Texas Book Festival 2013, Austin Record Convention Halloween, Phil Anselmo, Ancient VVisdom, Goblin, Gourds, Stubb's, Carla DeSantis, Carla Black, White Denim, Chronolog

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